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tv   Fareed Zakaria GPS  CNN  January 6, 2013 10:00am-11:00am PST

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responsibility to serve as their voice. >> it's about making sure that we are protecting medicare and social security. >> making sure we will put policy together that supports innovation and. that allows companies to succeed. >> be a watchdog to make sure we're not wasting money. >> we have a doesn't that is crushing this country. we have a congress that's been unable to work together to solve what is essentially math. >> we cannot continue to spend the way we have in recent years. >> quit playing party politics. start moving the ball forward. put american people back in front. >> that's how we move forward as americans. >> it's the sort of thing freshmen usually say and they mean it, but sometimes washington changes them. we wish the class of 2013 well. if you want to see more from our conversation with the new congress, we've posted the full interviews on our website, just go to thanks to the freshman lawmakers who gave us some of their time on these busy first days in congress. thank you for watching "state of
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the union." i'm candy crowley in washington. if you missed any part of today's show find us on itunes. fareed zakaria "gps" is next. this is "gps global public square." welcome to all of you in the united states and around the world. i'm fareed zakaria coming to you today from london. happy new year. on today's show, we'll look ahead at what 2013 might bring around the world. i have a great panel richard haass, anne-marie slaughter and ian bremer who i will ask to gaze into their crystal balls. will assad fall, will israel bomb iran, and will the euro zone finally break apart? then the fiscal cliff. the view from across the pond. how did our political process look from a perch overseas and what will it all mean for the u.s. economy and the global economy? also, will this be india's
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awakening? the nation confronts its own dark corners after a despicable deadly act. i'll look at some parallels with america's recent tragic school shooting. first, here's my take. the deal to avoid the fiscal cliff is a small victory for sanity, but what it says about the future is somewhat bleak. washington will probably lurch from crisis to crisis kicking problems forward and placing band aids small solutions on those it does address. there will likely be no large-scale initiative on tax reform, entitlement reform, energy policy, probably even immigration reform and this is the real worry. because beyond the self-inflicted crisis of the cliff and the forthcoming debt ceiling, the united states faces a much deeper challenge. for more than a decade now, for many decades by some measures, america's growth rates have slowed. recoveries have been jobless.
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and median wages have declined. some combination of the information revolution and globalization has placed tough pressures on high-wage countries like the united states. these new forces of technology and globalization are accelerating and without a strategy to revive growth, long-term growth, all our problems get worse, including and especially our debt. washington's focus so far has been on raising taxes and cutting spending. it should really be on reforming and investing in the american economy. historically when the american government or the world bank or the imf advised countries that got into trouble, they usually stress that achieving fiscal stability, austerity was only a part of the solution. the key to reviving growth is structural reform to make the economy more competitive, as well as crucial investments in human and physical capital to ensure the next generation of growth. yet, we have not followed our own prescriptions.
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the united states has plenty of areas where it could become much more competitive. it has a huge and corrupt tax code that clocks in at 73,000 pages, including regulations. it has vast areas of the economy like agriculture that receive destroying subsidies for no national purpose. if the case for reform is important, the case for investment is urgent. the big shift in the american economy over the last 30 years has been a decline in the quality of physical and human capital. take one example relating to our physical capital, infrastructure. it is estimated that it will cost $25 billion to upgrade america's air traffic computers to the next gen system that will allow for safer and faster air traffic. by not making this investment, we are measurably slowing down economic activity and growth. multiply this example by dozens and dozens and you get a sense
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of the scale of our infrastructure problem and deficit. or consider the decline in human capital. we used to lead the world in young college graduates. we now rank 14th and dropping. the federal government spends plenty of money, but the largest part of our budget now goes directly to entitlements. spending on present consumption like entitlements has large constituencies and spending for the next generation of growth, investment, has few supporters. recently, the "washington post" interviewed the harvard scholar who famously predicted that japan would become the world's number one economy in the 1980s. vogel explained while japan's economic miracle was real and its economy stayed very sophisticated, he never foresaw how its political system would seize up and become unable to solve the challenges it faced in the 1990s. today japan remains a rich country, but with a diminishing future.
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its per capita gdp is now 24th in the world and falling. its growth government debt to gdp stands at over 230%. let's just hope that 20 years from now people do not look back and say the american economy was vibrant, but the american political system seized up in a similar way. for more on this, take a look at my column in "washington post" and my recent article in foreign affairs. for links to both, go to let's get started. first with flashpoints for 2013. what we should expect. so what will 2013 bring across the world? let's look into our crystal balls and make some well informed predictions. joining me now are two former heads of the state department's internal think tank anne-marie slaughter is professor at princeton university and richard
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haass president of the council on foreign relations and also were both directors of policy planning at the state department. also ian bremer, the president of the eurasia group, a global risk consulting firm. welcome all. so the first one i want to talk about is assad. you thought last year he would have fallen by now. most people did. it looks like a better prediction this year, but it seems as though it's even conceivable that he could wait out 2013 or no? >> no, i don't think so. i would say he hasn't fallen yet, but we're now into the end game where it's clear he's going to fall and just a question of how long, not just we're predicting, we want him out, but he really is on his way out. i don't think there is any way he will survive 2013, but i'm not convinced there will be a government to replace him by the end of 2013. >> why has he stayed there as long? i was more skeptical that he would fall quickly and the reason was simple.
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the syrians have a great army, a very strong army, and they have been incredibly brutal in their willingness to use it against the rebels. >> that's part of it. it's a real state. this is not like -- this is a real state but look what happened to the sunnis in iraq. they took their cue from that. they know it's not going to be pretty, the aftermath, plus they had external support. the russians and the chinese diplomatically and the iranians militarily. with military and economic support, oil support. you add all this up and they had this combination of real reason to hang in there, plus some external friends who has enabled them to do it. plus, one other thing, the opposition is not a single opposition. the opposition is plural. hundreds and hundreds if not thousands. of groups, militias, it's almost hard to dignify it with the word opposition and this, too, has given them an awful lot of space. anne-marie's basic point is exactly right. they're going to be gone and the real question is going to be how messy is the aftermath? >> how messy? you have done some work on the
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incredibly fractured nature of syria. >> right. how messy both within syria, because it's very unlikely there will be an effective government to replace assad's regime as they withdraw and also the enormous impact of refugees streaming across the border. over 500,000 already in jordan and turkey and iraq and north africa, as well as jihadists sa laughists causing violence in places like jordan and iraq. so, it's not only messy in terms of a continuing bleeding human rights problem on the ground in syria, irrespective if assad is still there at the end of 2013 or not, but also because we're going to see more sectarian violence metastasizing because of the outcomes from the syrian war. >> i think ian is absolutely right. if you look at the number of refugees, they are already starting to destabilize jordan, just in terms of inability to cope. in turkey, if syria splits into multiple regions, as i think certainly will happen for a while, you'll have a kurdish
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autonomous zone in syria that is going to create major trouble for turkey and lebanon is already being destabilized actively by supporters of the sunni opposition. we're already seeing it and it will get much worse. >> just to spell that out, a kurdish autonomous zone in syria, means you would have kurdish militias potentially trying to link up with their brethren in turkey -- >> and in northern iraq, right? northern iraq is basically a separate state from the rest of iraq in many ways and that's what the kurds have always wanted. that's the turks worst nightmare and that is just one part of the fragmentation of syria. >> now let's talk about the one other on, which is iraq. i mean, all these things, the united states has, in some ways, marginal influence because these are very deep, internal dimensions. the one thing where we have -- the train has left the station. we have said that we will not allow for containment and we are going to do something. i was at an event recently with former senior official and i said, do you think the united
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states should have said, ruled out containment and this guy said, well, i work for many, many presidents and they all said things they later have to live with and they said that about north korea. what do you think will happen with iran? >> the first thing will happen will be a push for diplomacy and we'll see whether against this backdrop of sanctions whether you can come up with a deal that is essentially enough for the iranians and not too much for the united states and israelis. i think you have to be a little bit skeptical about that happening and then the real question is what the iranians actually do. i think the more probable trajectory they stop at least for the time being, just short of a nuclear weapon. that wouldn't trigger mr. obama's comment. and then the question -- >> short of netanyahu's red line? >> that's the bigger question. the israeli tolerance is less than the american tolerance. if the iranians say 90% of the way towards a nuclear weapon, can we live with that? the united states? can the israelis live with that? that might depend in part on
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what the details are and what degree of inspections or transparency we have and what is the timeline between where they arrive at before they can actually have a nuclear weapon? do we feel we will have other opportunities to interrupt it? my hutch is that's going to be the big debate of 2013. what's so interesting about this, more than any other issue, this could be the one that affects not just the entire region, because it's already on edge for all the reasons that ian and anne-marie mentions. >> i think this president will be different than other presidents in terms of other presidents in terms of being willing to strike iran because this president came into office determined to move the world away from nuclear weapons. he came in with the idea that if we have 30 countries in the world with nuclear weapons, we're going to blow ourselves up. part of his legacy is to actually move away to a less, to a world that could imagine not having nuclear weapons. so, iran for him is not just about israel's security, it's not just about the middle east,
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it's about if another nation gets nuclear weapons, we will never be able to stop this. so, i actually think if they go towards deciding to get a nuclear weapon, he will strike. he will not live with containment, but for broader reasons than other presidents have had. >> the exit question, i'll start with you. will there be an israeli or american strike in 2013? >> no, absolutely not. but i'm also very skeptical that we're going to see a deal. i think there will b a lot of headlines about diplomacy, but the timing is very difficult. the iranians have their own elections coming up in june. the americans and others have so demonized the iranians that even if we got to a deal which is credible, which is highly unlikely, our ability to sell it internally and externally would be very, very difficult. but when we ask, can we live with an iranian nuclear weapon? hey, you call this living? this is the question. it's not really living, but we're going to deal with it. i think that's where we're headed. >> no strike, no deal? would you agree? >> but the chances of a strike
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are not negligible. i would say they're around 30 or 40% because we can't live with a nuclear weapon and israel and the united states may not be able to live with something that close to it. >> i think the chances of a strike are over 50% and because i think that is true, i think the chances of a deal are higher than ian does because i think the iranians will know that and there are an awful lot of reasons domestically in terms of the falling apart of the iranian economy that means they are looking for a way to get a deal. >> the deal and the strike have to collectively add up to 100%. >> so, i would give it 60% chance of strike, 40% chance of deal. >> we will be back. we'll talk about the rest of the world. europe, the united states, everything. when we come back. and get a case of x-9 paperrkd for only 1-cent after maxperks rewards. find thousands of big deals now... officemax. i've always had to keep my eye on her... but, i didn't always watch out for myself.
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try capzasin-hp. it penetrates deep to block pain signals for hours of relief. capzasin-hp. take the pain out of arthritis. we are back with anne-marie slaughter, richard haass and ian bremmer. defining the world. europe, what do you think is the big trend in europe? is it going to be a breakdown or are they finally going to come together? >> europe is coming together. i think the biggest event of 2012 people didn't pay enough attention to is the fact that greeks pulled it together in the face of austerity like no one has ever seen and actually voted for the party that wanted to stay in the euro zone that wanted the bailout. that was an incredible show of political courage and will. it meant that greece stays in the eurozone and that, in fact, as halting and clumsy and awkward as the eu politics are,
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they're on their way to unified banking regulation in the eurozone. their crisis fund has stabilized. it's not going to be pretty and it's going to take a couple of years still, but we are on our way to a stronger and more unified eu, with or without britain over time. >> what do you think? >> a little bit too positive to me. i would say europe is probably not coming apart. different said statement than europe is coming together. i think the reason it probably won't come apart is greece, not france. sooner or later, that is the real test. the president of france is taking france in directions that are truly unsustainable economically. but for germany, it's one thing if greece were to leave, but for france, it can't leave. if you're germany, that's the whole core, the whole concept, the dynamic of post-world war ii european integration. germany will go to great lengths, i think really whatever lengths it takes to keep france in. europe will survive but economic growth is not going to take off, it's still going to be extremely weak because it doesn't have in place any of the prequick sists
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of robust economic growth. >> the head of morgan stanley's emerging markets fund had a piece where he said europe is actually going to bounce back in 2013 because they have paid the price, they've done a lot of the difficult reforms that countries often have to do in these kind of crises and that they'll reap the benefits. >> that's starting. greek labor rates right now are about 25% less than they were at the start of the crisis. they're becoming more competitive and export more. you see spanish exports picking up as well. certain li bloated sectors in portugal, spain and italy are coming back and you're seeing more competitiveness. it is a very slow process. europe is in recession and unemployment is at record levels and that's not going to stop in 2013. so, i am very optimistic that europe stays together. i think 2013 still looks like europe muddling through, but not muddling in place. it is moving into a better direction over time and the most important player is angela merkel. merkel has almost 70% approval ratings right now.
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astonishing given what she's done for all these shiftless in the periphery and further more, there was even 47% approval as opposed to 42% opposition in germany for additional greek bailout. isn't that astonishing? that's really the story here. the germans are onboard. >> right. and she'll probably win re-election? >> very easily. >> let's keep moving. china. richard, if the pivot to asia has been very successful, but in the sense that other countries you know, the asian countries from indonesia to vietnam to japan that the u.s. is more engaged. is there a danger that this turns into a kind of containment policy against china and the chinese don't like it and that produces its own u.s./china rivalry? >> if we were to move too much towards a containment policy, sure, there is a danger it would
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become self-sul filling. what i think works against that, though, is most of the countries in the region aren't ready for that. they don't want to have to choose between the united states and china and they don't want to push us into containment. what they really want to do is keep us close and what we want to do is keep them close. we don't want them each going their own way with nuclear programs or military programs tornado in, we don't want them to feel they've got to apiepeas china. so, what i think you're seeing is actually fairly about right. i don't like the word pivot, it's too sharp. more economic dynamics to american foreign policy and it to push a new transpacific and trade agreement, the partnership. but the basic idea that we're going to dial down somewhat in this turbulent middle east and in asia and north america which is our energy and economic future. i think it's about right. >> we have a new japanese prime minister who is himself a big nationalist. >> yes, we do. and this is his second go, first time in 2006, his first trip as prime minister back then was to china. his first trip as prime minister this time around will be to the united states. back in the beginning of 2012 we
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were talking about a big year of transitions, china, france, russia, the united states, none ended up mattering all that much, even france, but japan, the japanese selection really matters. the restoration party did very, very well. it's like a japanese tea party. a green tea party. and the japanese -- you know, put it together. and, also, his democratic party. i think unlike these southeast asian countries where chinese feel more comfortable over time they'll do well and massive chinese business communities living in those countries that are orienting them towards china, that's not true in japan. japan doesn't have that link and the chinese don't need the japanese. they don't need the money or the technology. they can get it from south korea and taiwan. i think the danger of china/japan conflict in 2013, for me, is the single biggest geopolitical tension that is underappreciated right now and
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one we're going to have to have watch very carefully. one where the americans could really end up getting sucked in. >> our exit question on this one is a totally different subject and we we don't have a lot of time for it but i'll ask each of you. will the united states get its act together? by getting its act together, i mean, will congress and president obama be able to enact a series of measures that will stabilize the american economy for the future? >> i'm going to say yes. i'm just going to say yes. i think 2013 is the year where obama feels strong enough and has learned enough lessons and the country understands what is at stake very fundamentally and the economics are starting to get better. manufacturing is coming back. it's actually coming back from offshore to onshore. we recognize how critical infrastructure is in the wake of sandy and other things. i actually think the ingredients are there. i don't think there is one blinding moment where everybody sort of gets religion and says we're going to do it, but we're
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going to be on our way back. >> some positive signs. economic growth will probably pick up and a good chance we'll get comprehensive immigration reform in 2013, which would be good for any number of reasons. corporate tax reform. there seems to be bipartisan support for that. will we solve if you will the fiscal challenges of the year, no, we'll still be kicking cans down the road, use whatever cliches you want. there's a bit of momentum finally in the right direction. there's economic momentum in the u.s. that will reduce some of the political pressure. the u.s. isn't europe and a deal isn't as urgent and won't be until 2013, but i think a little less polarized than it has been in obama's first term. >> on that optimistic note, thank you, all. we look forward -- it's a good way to say happy 2013. we will be back. ...and down. just use your maxperks card and get a case of x-9 paper for only 1-cent after maxperks rewards.
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now for our "what in the world" segment. the recent school shooting in connecticut looked like a tipping point in public consciousness. americans have been asking themselves tough questions. why does this happen so often and so much more in america than in other countries? what does gun violence say about us as americans and what measures can we put in place to stop it? i saw a similar bout of soul searching this week when i was in india. across the country tens of
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thousands of people took to the streets to express outrage over the rape and death of one unnamed woman. the crime crossed unimaginable boundaries, not only was she overpowered and raped bay group of six men, she was also beaten and then violated with a metal rod. all of this on a seemingly safe private bus in new delhi. the abuses were so violent, her internal organs were severely damaged. she was thrown off the bus to die. but some locals alerted the police. the indian government then flew her to a hospital in singapore for emergency surgery, but she died. the national attention over her death is shedding light on how unsafe indian women actually are. according to the national crimes record bureau, there were more than 24,000 registered rapes in 2011. that's one rape every 22 minutes in india. those are just the ones we know about.
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by some accounts, only a tenth of all such crimes in india actually get reported. why such a shockingly high rate of violent crime? indians are debating the reasons. the reality is this. this is one more example of a government that simply does not deliver. india has a broken public safety system, little to no public surveillance and cctv systems at a pathetic and corrupt police force. according to the u.n.'s office on drugs and crime, south asia has one of the lowest percentages. of lowest police officers to civilians in the world. it has among the fewest prosecutors as a percentage of the population. there could be other factors. india has a demographic crisis according to 2011 census, only nine women for every ten men, that's one of the world's worst sex ratios and that doesn't happen naturally, it happens because tens of thousands of indians opt for abortions if they know they are having a
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daughter. but these conditions are not unique. some of them exist elsewhere too. perhaps most of all, rape happens so often in india, simply because it is allowed to happen. there is a culture of impunity. of the 600 rape cases reported in delhi this year, only one has led to a conviction. that's why the current set of sustained protests are something of a silver lining. people are genuinely upset. the rise of india's middle class has activated a powerful civil society. one that is demanding better government. it did so a year ago regarding corruption and now asking for basic rights for women. in a way, this is india's arab spring. but it needs to sustain itself. and to lead to real reform and change. this indian spring will only work out better than the arab spring if its national leaders recognize the need for radical and thorough change in their
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country. up next, a look at the fiscal cliff deal in washington from the eyes of two great british economists and journalists. ack ! humans -- we are beautifully imperfect creatures living in an imperfect world. that's why liberty mutual insurance has your back with great ideas like our optional better car replacement. if your car is totaled, we give you the money to buy one a model year newer. call... and ask one of our insurance experts about it today. hello?! we believe our customers do their best out there in the world, and we do everything we can to be there for them when they need us. [car alarm blaring] call now and also ask about our 24/7 support and service. call... and lock in your rate for 12 months today.
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liberty mutual insurance. responsibility. what's your policy?
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shame, elation, confusion, irritation, disbelief. those were just some of the emotions americans felt this week as they watched the painful process of democracy in action or in inaction as they went over the fiscal cliff.
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albeit briefly. i'm in london. i have furious how it looked from here and what it means, if anything, for the global economy. joining me now are lionel barber, editor of "the financial times" and anatole kaletsky, economic columnist for reuters. americans are sure this makes us look like complete idiots. what i'm struck by for the last few years americans have tended to look at europe with a certain sense of superiority. our federal reserve acted more quickly, the t.a.r.p. and things like that case where american democracy was sort of able to act in a crisis. does it now look like we're floundering as much as the europeans, the japanese, even worse? >> well, this was something of a brussels-style fudge in the sense that something was resolved, but not everything. this was a mini stop -- mini deal, a stop gap measure, which essentially prevented, as you say, america going over the fiscal cliff. all the difficult decisions were
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really postponed on spending. so, i think there was some disappointment in europe looking at america, but i think we need to be careful about saying that america is somehow ungovernable. the politics are very difficult, but catastrophe was averted this week. >> a lot of people say well, you know, it's not so bad because, this is the paul krugman view, at the end of the day, all the measures or the solutions were all terrible because it was all more austerity than what we need. what we really need is none of this right now. no spending cuts, no tax increases and so, thank goodness, we had a very small dose of it. >> well, i tend to agree with that. i noticed among your abstract nouns with which you started shame, confusion, you didn't mention relief because that's the one that actually i felt. obviously, not as i saw the process. the process was very ugly, you know, bismarck said if people saw the way sausages were made, they would never eat them and
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it was very much an example of that, but when i saw the vote in the senate and then in the house, i must say i felt a good deal of relief because the scale of this deal for the problems confronting the u.s. and the world economy today and in the year or two ahead was actually about the right scale of the deal. we didn't want a bigger tax increase. we don't want more public spending cuts. we don't want faster action on the budget. this is about the right pace. now, there are a lot of long-term problems that remain to be resolved, but it was completely unrealistic to try to solve those in three weeks after the november 6th election. so, i think, actually, the ultimate outcome of this is not bad and it actually makes me pretty optimistic about the outlook for this year. >> except that we're going to do this, again, and again and again. right? we're going to hit the two months the cuts start again, unless we do something. what it seems like the problem here is that you're kicking the can down the road on all the
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difficult decisions. >> what you're alluding to is the march 1 deadline where you are going to have a vote on whether to increase the debt ceiling and, also, you face the sequester across the board on spending. that could be very, very messy. and i think people have every right to be concerned about whether you'll see any kind of sensible resolution between the democrats and republicans. what's worrying is that neither leader, neither john boehner, speaker of the house of representatives, he doesn't seem to be able to control his conservative republicans in the house and mr. obama, president obama, strangely reluctant to take the lead this week. he left it to vice president biden. >> well, again, i would take a rather more optimistic view about the politics, as well. we can all agree that it's a very messy process, politics all over the world in europe and in washington lionel and i both worked for the fd in washington, so, we understand that process
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reasonably well. i actually think that the next two months are more encouraged about the outlook for the next two months for what happened in the last few weeks in washington precisely because in a sense they've gone through a cathartic experience. this was very, very ugly and very, very difficult, i think especially for the republican party. so, i think that this potentially sets a precedent whereby you can see majorities certainly in the senate and possibly in the house being formed from the democrats plus a significant number of moderate republicans, which would be capable of coming up with compromises, especially because as i think we've both agreed, it's not about taking really unpleasant decisions that would affect the year ahead, about the medium and longer term outlook. >> what can we learn from what is going on in britain?
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because you have -- you are now into a year or so of the real, the austerity program really taking place and, you know, on the one hand people who say, look, george osborn and david cameron say, we have to do this. we had to get serious and we had to get our fiscal house in order and, yes, it is going to be painful. there are people who say look, the british economy contracted more than it did during the great depression. >> that's a great question. i agree with the gist of your question, this being a big theme of mine for the last two years. if you look at the amount that britain has managed to reduce its deficit in the last three years, it's actually less than the reduction in deficit in the united states. the united states purely through economic growth without any tax hikes or significant public spending cuts, has actually managed to be more successful in controlling its deficit and debt than britain has with an austerity program, which is
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really second only to that in spain and possibly italy, among the major economies in the world. so, i think britain is a very good object lesson for the united states of the danger of doing too much too soon in terms of trying to cut deficits. >> i think the problem with anatole's argument is two-fold. first, america is not as exposed as britain to the euro zone. second, although i'm as big an english patriot as anatole i just don't think we have the kind of muscle to be able to borrow on such favorable terms as the americans. i think that it's very easy sometimes for the brits to encourage the americans to have expansionary fiscal policy, but at the same time be very supportive of the current austerity program in britain. two not easily reconcilable positions.
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pleasure to have you. thank you so much. >> and we will be back.
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100,000 dead. that is the gruesome total we could see in syria's civil war in 2013. unless the violence is stopped. that's according to the u.n. envoy brahimi and that's on top of at least 60,000 people who have already been killed in this
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conflict, according to an exhaustive analysis released by the u.n. this week. meanwhile, russia, perhaps the potential savior in the crisis, continues to refuse to act. so, what is the solution? joining me now is fawaz gerges professor of middle eastern politics at the london school of politics. he was on the syrian border in december. fawaz, you've heard people say the assad regime days are numbered, it is the end game. but, of course, people have been saying this for a while. you have always felt the regime had more staying power and, more importantly, more will power to stay than people have assumed. you still think this regime can hang on? >> what you have, fareed, in syria is a military stalemate and political and diplomatic deadlock. neither side can deliver a blow. neither side believes in a political settlement.
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the conflict in syria has not reached a tipping point yet. and contrary to the wisdom you just mentioned, the assad regime is not on the verge of imminent basically collapse. but the reality is, what we have now, you asked me about the political and diplomatic balance of power. you're talking about the gravity of the humanitarian crisis is immense, just immense. more than 60,000 people have been killed. millions of civilians are either displaced or refugees. this is a poor country. >> how do we stop it? how will it stop? >> well, i believe i have become, fareed, more and more convinced than ever that only a political settlement can rescue syria out of this. >> but you just said assad doesn't believe in a political settlement and, so how do you -- >> that's why the question is how do you ease assad out of power? how do you broker historical settlement between the assad regime and the opposition?
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i think lakhdar brahimi is right when he says that the gates of hell have become open in syria. i mean you're talking about 5,000 people are being killed on a monthly basis since june. i would argue 2013 would likely be more violent, more syrians will likely die in 2013 unless a political settlement is reached. >> so, do you think if the united states or the other countries were to be talking to iran, there would be some path to assad? because iran has been, has thrown itself all in in a sense with the assad regime. it is, as you say, they haven't backed down at all. they show no signs neither iran nor russia, but certainly not iran, of being willing to use their influence to get out us to leave. on the contrary, they're supporting him no matter what he does. >> absolutely. i think iran is one of the most important players in the conflict. not only you have an internal conflict, you have, also, a fierce, regional rivalry.
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between iran on the one hand and saudi arabia and the gulf states on the other hand and international rivalry between the united states and the western powers and russia. you need a historical settlement whereby regional powers and the great powers reach a political deal in order to bring about an end to the syrian conflict. >> this seems like a low likely scenario. the chances of a historical settlement where the iranians and the russians pressure the syrians is low. so, the most likely scenario, not the one that you would desire or any of us would is continued warfare, continued civil war, more people dying, the conflict getting regionalized and perhaps spilling over? >> you know, as you know in civil wars and conflicts, we think that there's always a political miracle out of there. during a political miracle, this fight is to the bitter end. the assad regime will most likely fight to the end and the
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likely fight to bitter end and the regime will not talk to the assad regime as long as assad is in power. my fear is that at the end of this conflict, syria will most likely be destroyed and syria, assad will go. but in the meantime, in the meantime, 2013 will most likely be very violent and more syrians will die in the country. >> you still feel that it would be a mistake for the west to intervene? >> well the west has intervened. the west is wamging a war by other means. against the assad regime. economic war, financial war, intelligence war. but the reality is the west is very reluctant to provide arms to the opposition. here is the irony. the west supports the opposition. in particular, the syrian national coalition. yet also the united states has put the so-called jihad, a radical jihadist group. >> and it is -- >> they branded them a terrorist organization. >> absolutely. yet, they are one of the most
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important potent and skilled fighting machines, inside syria. here is the irony, what do you do? how do you provide the opposition with arms. in order to expedite the end of the conflict, without the arms falling into the wrong hand. and here is the predicament of the opposition. the opposition says we will not talk to the assad regime as long as assad remains in power. yet the opposition does not have the capacity to deliver a decisive blow against the assad regime. it means you have deadlock, more escalation, and the humanitarian crisis will increase in the next few months and year. >> fawaz gerges, always a pleasure. >> thank you. >> and we will be back. ... down... ...and down. just use your maxperks card and get a case of x-9 paper for only 1-cent after maxperks rewards. find thousands of big deals now... officemax.
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i'm in london today, enjoying one of my favorite things, a classic british cup of tea. and it happens to be national hot tea month back in the united states. who knew. and that brings me to my question of the week -- what tea-growing area was recently given protected status for its name? just as anything called champagne must come from the
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change pain region of france and stilton cheese must come from stilton, england. was it ceylon, java, darjeeling, or assan. stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer. for more of the gps challenge and insight and analysis. follow us on twitter and facebook. if you miss a show, go to itunes, can you get the audio postcast for free or buy the video version. go directly there by typing itunes/fareed into your browser. this is an i-magazine. the latest edition of the storied magazine, "foreign affairs." the whole magazine has been redesigned and this issue has a great debate about perhaps the biggest foreign policy challenge facing the united states facing the world -- the future of china. will it go democratic.
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it also has an article by me, about america's biggest challenge. for a link to that, go to and buy the magazine. now for the last look. >> more than 100 years ago, the first ball was dropped in new york's time square to celebrate a new year. >> today cities around the world celebrate those first moments of the new year en masse. >> happy new year! >> but this year, there was a truly remarkable first -- myanmar, formerly burma held what is believe to be its first-ever public new year's celebration. see, the ruling junta had denied the right to ring in the new year as part of a larger ban on any large gathering. but with the pressure off on
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monday night, the burmese were finally free to celebrate the passage of time. from 2013, to 2013. as many as 100,000 people were set to have attended this event. much of the pricetag for the party was covered by international companies. all wrangling to get a piece of the action in the booming economy. the correct answer to our gps challenge question was c, if you're drinking darjeeling tea, you can be sure that it was grown in the darjeeling district up in the northeast border with nepal. the protecting of names is protecting the special terroir of the area of foods. hello, i'm martin savidge with a check of our top stories, president obama is back in washington, he and the first family returned